Adaptive Reuse Report

Results of Adaptive Reuse The construction and demolition industry should make adaptive reuse a top priority because greater material circulation could reduce GHG emissions and disposal fees, which saves businesses money and lessens environmental harm. Extending the life of existing buildings could reduce GHG emissions by 1.3 billion tons of CO2e per year by 2050, and ensuring all building materials used in construction are necessary and utilized can reduce emissions by another 1.2 billion tons of CO2e annually. Aside from lowering carbon emissions, adaptive reuse results in cost reductions. Current steel costs hover around $1,300 per ton so designing steel for reuse could generate up to 25% savings in material costs per ton of steel. Since the US uses 40 million tons of steel in building construction, total savings in steel production costs could reach $13 billion through reuse. In addition to designing for reuse, studies show that designing buildings for disassembly can

from the COVID-19 pandemic have shifted the ways in which society utilizes space, leaving many buildings sitting idly, especially offices and schools. With 40% of Europeans and 72% of U.S. white- collar workers now working from home, vacant office spaces are being considered for housing development to address global housing shortages. Since schools were also forced into closures, cities like Lagos have converted these spaces into markets so that people can buy goods closer to home and avoid crowding in central markets. Leveraging adaptive reuse principles can support the reopening of spaces and enable circular cities by focusing on flexible space design. This aligns with initiatives, such as the Circular Chicago Coalition, that are working towards maximum utilization of commercial and residential spaces. Adaptive reuse projects serve to re-allocate important physical and human resources, but over time they can also improve urban flow of goods and services, contributing to major economic development wins: competitiveness, jobs creation, sustainable development, and innovation.

Total savings in steel productio n costs could rea ch through reuse. $ 13 BILLION

be 5% more cost-effective than demolition. While adaptive reuse will remain an important method towards enabling circularity in the C&D industry, it can be highly effective in aiding post- pandemic recovery efforts right now. Lockdowns

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